Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Political Betting - Male Bastionism at its best?

Last night I popped in to the Political Betting 5 year birthday party at the NLC. I dragged along a pal from Northern Ireland, haven't had chance to catch up with her yet to see what she made of it! But - much as I shout the odds about poor representation within our party - last night was truly shocking. Apart from us and Mike Smithson's wife Jackie there were only two other women there. The room was packed - but they were virtually all men, virtually all white and virtually all Tory men at that! One of them helpfully pointed out that the reason was that women generally were not interested in politics or betting............ hmmmmmm........probably far better tucked up at home with their knitting and nothing to worry their pretty little heads eh?!

But it was and is depressing - whilst we have made strides in terms of better representation in parliament, in terms of gender, ethnicity etc., we still have such a hill to climb. Men, God luv'em, still dominate political debate at every level. I was left wondering if we are banging our heads against a titanium wall - or if we just have to content ourselves that progress will likely mirror that of the ambitious stalagmite's quest to reach the roof of the cave.

That said, all credit to Mike for conceiving of and developing such an important and enlightening resource for all those of us who really appreciate his insightful and truly spinfree analysis.


1 comment:

Julian H said...

Ha, tell me about it, I once inadvertently created a talking point by taking two women to a pb.com party. One of them was under 30, too. Imagine!

Sadly I couldn't make Monday because another woman recently took a pair of scissors to my only suit. (Seriously)

Anyway, to the point - for whatever reason, statistics and gambling (probably more so than politics) still seem to attract more men - or at least they did a few decades ago, so these (old white men) are now the people with the time and money to take political gambling seriously. So, on a positive note, perhaps that's all this is - a time lag.

As for the Tory thing - pb.com has always tended to be dominated by Tories and LDs, with a notable absense of authoritarian socialists / managerialists.